Oliver Petty talks about being part of the first group of smokejumpers trained at Seeley Lake, Montana, in 1943. He recalls spending the summers of 1943-1945 in the smokejumper unit, and spending the winters of 1943 and 1944 doing soil conservation work at the camp in Glendora, California. Petty describes his training, and setting up the camp at Big Prairie, Montana, where he was stationed. He talks about a few of his 29 jumps, including a few where he jumped in order to be the camp cook on a fire. He discusses life in the base camp, including an encounter with a bear. Petty talks about his life after the war, and his career as a beekeeper. He finishes by reflecting on the experience of being a conscientious objector, and talks about how his children enjoy coming to the smokejumper reunions.
Civilian Public Service; Conscientious objectors, United States; Smokejumpers, Montana; World War, 1939-1945; 4-E classification; Christian Church; Smokejumper training; Seeley Lake; Beekeeping; Forestry
Civilian Public Service Smokejumpers Oral History Project, OH 163, Archives and Special Collections, Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula
University of Montana--Missoula. Mansfield Library
Copyright to this collection is held by the interview participants and by the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula. Permission may be required for use. For further information please contact Archives and Special Collections: (406) 243-2053 / email@example.com
Oral History Number
1 sound cassette (01:30:00 min.) analog + 1 transcript (17 p.: 28 cm.)
Petty, Oliver W., "Oliver W. Petty Interview, August 11, 1986" (1986). Civilian Public Service Smokejumpers Oral History Project. 30.